As you can see from the title, there are a lot of “as-a-Services” floating around in the modern marketplace. New vendors appear every day offering software, platforms, and infrastructure over the cloud. In the midst of this wild west-style atmosphere, how can you be sure that the type of solution you choose will be right for you and will consistently perform in the way you expect? Read more

IBM recently rolled out Watson Analytics Pro, a more feature-rich, subscription-based version of their free Watson Analytics platform. This new option adds some powerful new functionality to the already excellent base product, enabling subscribers to be more connected to their existing data sources and analyses, providing more storage space, and allowing for easy administration of Professional licenses and users. The best part? IBM has announced to existing Cognos BI, TM1 and Sales Performance Management customers a program that allows free subscriptions to Watson Analytics Professional Edition. This is a limited time offer. Read more

Guarding the security of and defining access to data is often a necessary business requirement. Not all users can or should have access to a total data set, so filter strategies need to be applied to restrict what appears to different users running reports. As Cognos developers, the first question we should ask when faced with this requirement is what filter strategies work best for our data and why? Read more

The Preferred Syntax to use in Cognos and Why

Cognos is not a programming language, but it does allow programmable syntax such as a case or an if logic statement.  The question is, which is the preferred syntax to use and why?

Generally speaking, the answer is that it does not matter.  The best one to choose should be based on your brain’s ability to write and perceive the code one way or another.  The best application, however is to use them as follows: Read more

Powering business analytics evolution through targeted infrastructure support

Did you know there are over 326 million trillion gallons of water on Earth? Yes, you read that number right. It’s hard to even fathom (no pun intended) a number that large, let alone try and quantify it into consumable, actionable business analyses. Watts Water Technologies deals with the enormity of this vast natural resource every day, improving the global community’s comfort, safety, and quality of life through their industry-leading water regulation, purification, and reuse equipment solutions. Read more

Public data is everywhere, and if you know where to look, you’d be surprised at the insights it can give you. In fact, when paired with the right tools, this freely available information can enrich and complement your internal data resources to reveal compelling patterns of behavior and trends that you can act on to drive growth at your organization. To showcase what public data can do in the hands of professional analysts, we’re kicking off the Ironside Public Data Powered article series. These publications will periodically take you behind the scenes to show you how our consultants think about and interact with public data using the skills and technologies at their disposal. In this inaugural article, we’ll explore what it takes to start understanding patterns and relationships within a combined public and internal data set through IBM Watson Analytics.

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Today, our world is filled with data. It has quietly become part of our daily life, and we’ve changed our routines to accommodate it. Beyond the impact it’s had on us, data itself has dramatically changed over the past two decades due to continual advances in internet and storage technology. Almost everything we interact with now is digital: web browsers, smart phones, tablets, social media accounts, and much more. Read more

On April 14th, Ironside hosted a What to Expect for Your Cognos Environment webinar, where Ironside’s Technical Services Manager presented on how your Cognos environment should behave along with tips and tricks for making any necessary improvements. Read more

IBM SPSS Modeler 17 and Statistics 23 were officially released at the beginning of March 2015. There are several important changes in licensing structure and system infrastructure, as well as many innovative new functionality enhancements. This article will briefly introduce the enhancements added to Modeler 17 from a practical perspective. Something worth noting as you begin exploring this most recent round of upgrades is that Analytics Server will be heavily leveraged in a lot of these new features. Read more

Thanks to the widespread availability of the cloud and the rampant growth of the remote options it enables, these days it feels like everyone is looking for a Managed Services Provider (MSP) to help manage different aspects of their environment. Whether they provide firewalls, antivirus solutions, or business analytics platforms, MSPs abound. There are many ways to assess what these providers bring the table, but what are the most important characteristics to look for? As a provider and consumer of these services, I know what I strive to offer and what I look for from my vendors. In this article, I’ll illuminate my thought process for you in the hopes that it can set you on the road to successful, rewarding MSP relationships. Read more